Materials Challenges in Carbon Mitigation Technologies
Laura Espinal, Bryan D. Morreale
Thermochemical conversion of fossil fuels currently dominates the national and global energy portfolio, with the most notable being the stationary power production and transportation vehicles sectors. As global energy demand continues to increase, projections indicate that fossil fuels will continue to dominate the energy portfolio for the foreseeable future. Other growing industries that produce significant amount of CO2 include cement manufacturing, iron and steel production, gas and oil refining, and fermentation processes for food and drinks. Given the increasing size of these industries, coupled with the mounting awareness of the environmental issues, carbon management technologies are expected to play an important role in curtailing environmental emissions in the coming years. A major challenge in carbon management includes the development of cost-effective, technologically compatible, and efficient CO2 capture and storage technologies. The development of energy efficient solvent, solid sorbent, and membrane materials to capture CO2 from industrial exhaust streams can take process efficiency improvements one step further. Also, the permanent storage of carbon dioxide in geologic formations is of critical importance to the success of carbon management technologies. Advances in the reliable assessment of feasible geological locations for underground injection and long term storage of CO2 require representative experimental and computational data on the interactions and dynamics between CO2 and regional natural (minerals, fluids) and engineered (cement, steel) materials. Numerous materials challenges must be solved in order to make carbon capture and storage an economically viable and reliable technology to be adopted by the power and product manufacturing industries.
material challenges, carbon mitigation, carbon management, carbon capture materials, carbon capture and storage, CCS, environmental sustainability